ECHO Newsletter
June 9, 2016

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Boards fix problems: broken beams, peeling paint, loud parties, parking violations, unpaid assessments - the list isn't short. And every problem is someone's top priority, from ugly bed sheet curtains all the way through toxic, moldy walls. The pressures are endless, and in this atmosphere you might begin to feel like a human fire extinguisher.

But not every problem belongs to the board, nor should the board allow certain issues to overwhelm their attention. So how do you define those boundaries?

This article steps back from the messy details and examines the 10 basic areas of responsibility for HOA boards. Before approaching any problem, boards should ask:
  • Which area(s) of board responsibility are connected to this problem?
    Maintenance, rules enforcement, and assessment collection are common examples.
  • What are the board's obligations within those areas of responsibility? Know the limits of your authority and ascribe an appropriate level of urgency.
In the pressure cooker of board service, it is shockingly easy to lose perspective. New board members and veterans should review and discuss their basic responsibilities regularly. If the board can agree on the big picture, the smaller problems become more manageable. 

ECHO Professional Directory
When you can't do it all, delegate!
Since the arrival of the Open Meeting Act, many boards continue to struggle with unexpected business between meetings. Small associations without professional management are particularly hard pressed to stay within the law while taking care of HOA affairs. If the board can't discuss problems that arise between meetings, what should they do?
The answer is to delegate! Boards may permit certain individuals (e.g. board members, committees, managers, select homeowners) to conduct business on their behalf. To be safe, the board must establish clear limits for any delegated authority, and also understand which responsibilities may not be delegated.

This article examines the process and limits on delegated board authority to (hopefully) keep those special board meetings to a minimum.

May/June ECHO Journal
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Our May ECHO Journal is available online for ECHO Members. Read about speed bumps, defibrillators, the tension between good governance legal protection, and more!  All ECHO members may log in and read the Journal online. 

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